Spring: tips on the perfect grocery shopping!

Spring is officially here: the longer days and milder temperatures make us want to spend more time outdoors and why not even eat different, more refreshing foods.

Let’s find out together how to plan your spring shopping list!

Ten tips for your spring shopping

We start with the basics, building an ad hoc shopping list that allows us to always have what we need on hand, limits impulse buying and reduces food waste.

  1. Over the weekend, let’s carve out a half-hour to plan the week’s meals, following Harvard’s healthy plate rule, so it will be easier for us to figure out what to buy
  1. Let’s start our list with seasonal fruits and vegetables to fill up on flavor and valuable nutrients while also keeping our wallets happy. Let’s remember that we should consume 5 servings every day, ideally 2 of fruits and 3 of vegetables.
  1. As the second item we put bread and cereals. Be sure to try to range between pasta, rice (preferably whole grain) spelt, buckwheat, barley, quinoa, bulgur, cous cous …Remember that a balanced diet should be as varied as possible.

As for bread, opt for durum wheat bread, whole wheat bread, or rye bread. Always keep a supply of pre-sliced bread in the freezer for those days when you don’t have time to stop by and buy it.

Cereal flakes, plain or in a muesli version, could prove to be a good alternative to cookies and baked goods for your breakfasts at home.

  1. As far as protein is concerned, starting with fish, let’s consider an average of 3-4 servings per week, so a fair amount of fresh or frozen fish should never be missing from our shopping cart. We try to prefer small fish, such as our delicious bluefish. For meats, whose consumption should not exceed 2-3 servings per week, we opt for lean cuts and prefer white ones. We limit red meat consumption to once a week. Our shopping list then should never be without legumes, a valuable source of protein and enemy of cholesterol. So green light to beans, fava beans, chickpeas, lentils, lupins, edamame and peas. Finally, for a quick dinner or an alternative breakfast, we always keep a carton of fresh eggs in the house.
  1. Under condiments on the list we will find essentially extra-virgin olive oil and vinegar (wine, apple or balsamic vinegar to taste). If we wanted, we could add to our cart a small supply of seeds (chia, pumpkin, flax, sunflower or mixed) a source of good fats and great for our salads or to eat in yogurt. We also check that we always have a supply of herbs and spices (basil, rosemary, sage, thyme, parsley, chili pepper, turmeric, powdered or fresh ginger, cinnamon…) that on the one hand help us make our recipes more appetizing and on the other hand allow us to reduce the use of salt or sugar.
  1. We come to dairy products: milk, white yogurt (perfect for breakfast, as an ingredient for some sweet recipes or as a snack to take to the office) and cheese, considering a couple of servings a week. Vegetable drinks, in the unsweetened version, could also make it onto our list with flying colors.
  1. As for snacks, all we have to do is to add the entry of dried fruits (almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts…)
  1. On the other hand, if we think of a pampering, a dark chocolate bar and some refreshing herbal tea will not be missing from our pantry
  1. In addition, good shopping necessarily comes from reading labels: learning how to read and interpret them correctly is important for our health and to be more aware of what we buy and eat.
  1. Finally, we go shopping on a full stomach and possibly not sleep-deprived, both of which could push us toward impulse purchases.

Seasonal fruits, vegetables and legumes: a treasure trove not to be missed!

The greengrocer’s counter, in spring, changes little by little and we find ourselves catapulted into new colors and flavors, let’s find out together what are the must-have produce of this season. Among spring vegetables, let’s not miss artichokes, asparagus, agretti, radishes, spinach and green beans.

As for fruits, we hoard strawberries, loquats, cherries, apricots and plums. Finally, we enrich our grocery shopping with fresh fava beans and peas, which are excellent as an ingredient in balanced one-dish meals but also as an alternative snack. Now starting with these simple tips try to build your own shopping list, considering personal habits and tastes. Remember that a well-crafted list is the first brick toward an all-around wellness journey.

 

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